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Word Count: 2,015
Psychologists today increasingly view emotion as a safeguard of survival and an enrichment of experience throughout development Emotional expression provides a powerful communication system one that is especially important in the early childhood stage of life before language has been developed As these developments proceed voice face gesture and posture continue to communicate feelings to others and to influence their behaviour Ways of expressing emotion may be either innate or culturally acquired Certain facial expressions such as smiling have been found to be universal even among blind persons who have no means of imitating them Other expressions vary across cultures For example the Chinese stick out their tongues to register surprise in contrast to Americans and other Westerners who raise their eyebrows and widen their eyes In addition to the ways of communicating various emotions people within a culture also learn certain unwritten codes governing emotional expression itself-what emotions can be openly expressed and under what circumstances Cultural forces also influence how people describe and categorise what they are feeling An emotion that is commonly recognised in one society may be subsumed under another emotion in a different one Some cultures for example do not distinguish between anger and sadness Tahitians who have no word for either sadness or guilt have 46 words for various types of anger In daily life emotional arousal may have beneficial or disruptive effects depending on the situation and the intensity of the emotion Moderate levels of arousal increase efficiency levels by making people more alert However intense emotions-either positive or negative-interfere with performance because central nervous system responses are channelled in too many directions at once The effects of arousal on performance also depend on the difficulty of the task at hand emotions interfere less with simple tasks than with more complicated ones In 1884 William James publishes an article in a philosophy journal The article was named What is an emotion James
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